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Quality of life USA/EU (Easyjet/BA/Ryanair)

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Quality of life USA/EU (Easyjet/BA/Ryanair)

Old 21st May 2018, 22:05
  #1 (permalink)  
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Quality of life USA/EU (Easyjet/BA/Ryanair)

Hi everyone,

spaniard here flying E145 in the US (soon becoming a citizen). Love the country and the culture, and love the aviation here, BUT my family is in Europe, and distance sucks. After 10 years living overseas, I'm thinking about my options, and I definitely wanna be close to my parents to take care of them in the future.

It seems like the perfect time to be a pilot everywhere, and here in the US even more. T&Cs in here are quite impressive honestly, but not everything is money in this life (family). Although I need enough to buy my parents a small cozy house somewhere haha. I don't need much.

Once I receive a few "you're retarded" and similar compliments, I would like to hear from you guys what you think about the subject. Quality of life in those 3 carriers long term, earning potential, stability, etc.....

As an option I could fly here for a couple years and try coming back as a DEC, if that was still an option in the future.


I know the political situation is tense in Europe, but so is all over the world, including here in the US. Brexit worries me since the UK is big, aviation wise.

Thoughts?
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Old 22nd May 2018, 07:43
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I certainly wouldn’t recommend BA. Post Brexit, who knows? Except that it won’t be better. I live in Spain, and can tell you not to work here....but you would know that anyway-unless you can wangle a slot flying Ortega around .
I would stay put.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 09:29
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Not much to say, you will regret it dearly if you do it. Your choice
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Old 22nd May 2018, 10:35
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Why would you do such a stupid thing.
It is very clear you really dont appreciate the enormous privilege youve had in being an outsider and having the right to work in that aviation heaven called the US.
Im a spaniard also with FAA license but no right to work in the US yet and just telling you, you would be crazy to get back to europe.
US is the pinacle of aviation, maybe some people in BA, Lufhtansa or Iberia which live in a bubble will tell you otherwise and that the country stinks to fried food but they dont know what real live is like. And that is the best case, in the worst case you end up at EZY/RYR or so earning 100k a year for a miserable roster and 90 hours a month..

Dont listen to those calling you retard and take your parents to the us, get into Fedex or the so and earn 400k a year and laugh all the way to the bank at all the EU pilot loosers who think USA is a bad country.

And most important of all, enjoy the FREEDOM you have in that country, you wont have that anywhere else.

In any case make sure you secure your citizenship first, you can always come back after that if you decide to screw up. It must be a blast having that blue eagle Passport.

Last edited by dlcmdrx; 22nd May 2018 at 11:01.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 10:50
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I did exactly what you are contemplating. I left a US regional three years ago to join BA on the A320. A lot of those commenting don't appreciate the US pilots lifestyle. I am happier here than I have ever been because I live near family and I am home most nights. My life in the US consisted almost exclusively of four day trips. Some people love that, but it wasn't for me.

Many of my friends now fly for the big three in the US and make very good money. However, most are on eternal reserve, or get very junior schedules and are away a lot. I tend to nightstop two to three nights a month, and that's my choice. I haven't regretted my move once.

This is a very personal choice. For me, being at home was a very big deal. I think we're at a point where wages will have to rise in Europe too, certainly in the west. They won't hit the dizzying heights of the US majors, but once you factor in all of the costs that come out of your pay over there (insurance, tax, 401K etc) you're not that far off. A good friend of mine is a Captain at JetBlue. As you may know they have an agreement in principle for a new contract. He worked out his take home pay under the new deal, and while on paper the gross amount far exceeds what a BA captain makes, once he'd paid all of his deductions he was only receiving about 50% of the headline amount. That in turn was not much greater than a BA captain's take home pay.

If you plan to commute, I'd stay in the US. But if you want to live in base and you can be near family, do what is best for YOU. No one here can tell you what you really want, only you can.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 15:21
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Originally Posted by Raski View Post
I only tell you this.
EZY currently have 23 FOs desperately asking for part time in a UK base.
Make your own assumptions.
Europe has a very little number of decent operations as of now. You would be always fatigued in any of the 3 you mention.
In my european base every FO asking for part time is getting it, no problem. Actually more part time positions available than pilots applying for it.

There is more to easyJet than UK bases...
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Old 22nd May 2018, 16:18
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If you've got the command hours and don't mind being Portugal based, easyJet are always recruiting captains there. Good pay, secure job and great people to fly with. Is it a tiring roster, yes. Will there be things that will annoy you about the company, yes. Would I work anywhere else doing shorthaul? no. Lots of base choices, lots of part time options and a great bunch of people to fly with. Oh and I think it's the amongst the best paid short haul gig going...
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Old 22nd May 2018, 16:54
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Originally Posted by hunterboy View Post
I certainly wouldn’t recommend BA. Post Brexit, who knows? Except that it won’t be better. I live in Spain, and can tell you not to work here....but you would know that anyway-unless you can wangle a slot flying Ortega around .

I would stay put.
Yeah man, Spain is out of the question for me, Love my roots and my memories, but aviation there is depressing.


Originally Posted by dlcmdrx View Post
Why would you do such a stupid thing.

It is very clear you really dont appreciate the enormous privilege youve had in being an outsider and having the right to work in that aviation heaven called the US.

Im a spaniard also with FAA license but no right to work in the US yet and just telling you, you would be crazy to get back to europe.

US is the pinacle of aviation, maybe some people in BA, Lufhtansa or Iberia which live in a bubble will tell you otherwise and that the country stinks to fried food but they dont know what real live is like. And that is the best case, in the worst case you end up at EZY/RYR or so earning 100k a year for a miserable roster and 90 hours a month..

Dont listen to those calling you retard and take your parents to the us, get into Fedex or the so and earn 400k a year and laugh all the way to the bank at all the EU pilot loosers who think USA is a bad country.

In any case make sure you secure your citizenship first, you can always come back after that if you decide to screw up. It must be a blast having that blue eagle Passport.
Oh I see, is it really that clear?. You couldn't even imagine how much I appreciate my privilege, and what I've done to get here. But thanks for the aviation thoughts and perspective.

Originally Posted by EMB-145LR View Post
I did exactly what you are contemplating. I left a US regional three years ago to join BA on the A320. A lot of those commenting don't appreciate the US pilots lifestyle. I am happier here than I have ever been because I live near family and I am home most nights. My life in the US consisted almost exclusively of four day trips. Some people love that, but it wasn't for me.

This is a very personal choice. For me, being at home was a very big deal. I think we're at a point where wages will have to rise in Europe too, certainly in the west. They won't hit the dizzying heights of the US majors, but once you factor in all of the costs that come out of your pay over there (insurance, tax, 401K etc) you're not that far off. A good friend of mine is a Captain at JetBlue. As you may know they have an agreement in principle for a new contract. He worked out his take home pay under the new deal, and while on paper the gross amount far exceeds what a BA captain makes, once he'd paid all of his deductions he was only receiving about 50% of the headline amount. That in turn was not much greater than a BA captain's take home pay.

If you plan to commute, I'd stay in the US. But if you want to live in base and you can be near family, do what is best for YOU. No one here can tell you what you really want, only you can.
Thanks man, I appreciate your advice.

I know lot of people out there don't understand the family part, but for me is huge. At the same time money is a huge factor as well, so that I can take care of them....so it's a thin line really.

My asian friend tells me to be East Coast based and to commute to Europe. Here is easy to get some 14-15 days off per month, so it'd be doable short term, but long-term it must be a hard.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 17:06
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Originally Posted by dirk85 View Post
In my european base every FO asking for part time is getting it, no problem. Actually more part time positions available than pilots applying for it.

There is more to easyJet than UK bases...
What base has in your opinion the best quality of life overall?

Originally Posted by byrondaf View Post
If you've got the command hours and don't mind being Portugal based, easyJet are always recruiting captains there. Good pay, secure job and great people to fly with. Is it a tiring roster, yes. Will there be things that will annoy you about the company, yes. Would I work anywhere else doing shorthaul? no. Lots of base choices, lots of part time options and a great bunch of people to fly with. Oh and I think it's the amongst the best paid short haul gig going...
Yeah I saw they are hiring there all the time, which makes me wonder why haha. I'm OK with having a tight schedule, but not sure if long term you'd get tired of that operation.

I've had the worst jobs you can have out there (non-aviation related), so I know how lucky I am being able to fly for a living, no complaints at all. Just trying to figure out my next step.

I've always liked Easyjet. I lived for a couple of years in Edinburgh and I flew to Madrid often.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 17:58
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France, Italy and Germany have all very good contracts, good to great money, strong unions, plenty of part time options and decent benefits.
It's hard work but the roster is not bad (5 on 4 off where I am) and hours flown still acceptable (between 600 and 650 a year in my base for FOs and slightly more for Captains).
As Captain it is not easy to be hired straight to these countries, you might have to "suffer" somewhere else, but in a few years you should get a transfer, a part from the super popular bases, which might require a longer wait.

Quality of life depends on you, plenty of bases available in these countries.

Originally Posted by SextanteUK View Post
What base has in your opinion the best quality of life overall?



Yeah I saw they are hiring there all the time, which makes me wonder why haha. I'm OK with having a tight schedule, but not sure if long term you'd get tired of that operation.

I've had the worst jobs you can have out there (non-aviation related), so I know how lucky I am being able to fly for a living, no complaints at all. Just trying to figure out my next step.

I've always liked Easyjet. I lived for a couple of years in Edinburgh and I flew to Madrid often.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 18:46
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Originally Posted by dirk85 View Post
France, Italy and Germany have all very good contracts, good to great money, strong unions, plenty of part time options and decent benefits.
It's hard work but the roster is not bad (5 on 4 off where I am) and hours flown still acceptable (between 600 and 650 a year in my base for FOs and slightly more for Captains).
As Captain it is not easy to be hired straight to these countries, you might have to "suffer" somewhere else, but in a few years you should get a transfer, a part from the super popular bases, which might require a longer wait.

Quality of life depends on you, plenty of bases available in these countries.
I thought Easyjet was more of a 5/3 deal. But I guess each base can be quite different.

I lived in Germany for a few years and love it so much. Are those german bases big or not at all. Stable long-term?

Which country are you based at?
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Old 22nd May 2018, 19:44
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Go for Easyjet, Portugal basing. Full CLA. What do you want more. Pretty impressive terms.

RYR might be ok as well, depends which base you get. As far as I understood you just "drove" the jungle jet(ERJ145) which would not qualify you as a direct entry captain(which would be favourable as here you get normally your first choice and a RYR direct contract). With the right base close to home RYR would be interesting. Salary wise(as an FO with some agency contract) you would most likely make more money as you did on the ERJ back in the US(as a skipper I assume).

Bottomline - try Easy. Most likely the right way to go with your experience. That way you just need to bite in the sour apple once....
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Old 22nd May 2018, 20:06
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Originally Posted by tomuchwork View Post
Go for Easyjet, Portugal basing. Full CLA. What do you want more. Pretty impressive terms.

RYR might be ok as well, depends which base you get. As far as I understood you just "drove" the jungle jet(ERJ145) which would not qualify you as a direct entry captain(which would be favourable as here you get normally your first choice and a RYR direct contract). With the right base close to home RYR would be interesting. Salary wise(as an FO with some agency contract) you would most likely make more money as you did on the ERJ back in the US(as a skipper I assume).

Bottomline - try Easy. Most likely the right way to go with your experience. That way you just need to bite in the sour apple once....
Thanks man!.

I actually don't fly part 121, it's a part 135 outfit and make more than 1st year on a regional haha. Weird but true.

Plan would be to "skip" being an FO in Europe, since I'm already a FO here. I'll try my best to get hired at Frontier, Allegiant, Spirit even Jetblue, get an upgrade, and then if it was still a possible path, try DEC. But this is just an idea, who knows what's gonna happen even next year.

Maybe it'd be worth it to start as SO the sooner, to work my way up from there.

Do you have to pay for your type rating at EZY?
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Old 22nd May 2018, 20:14
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Originally Posted by SextanteUK View Post
I thought Easyjet was more of a 5/3 deal. But I guess each base can be quite different.

I lived in Germany for a few years and love it so much. Are those german bases big or not at all. Stable long-term?

Which country are you based at?
Rosters can depend from country to country. UK and most of the network is 5/4/5/3 (5 on/4 off/5 on/3 off), in other countries (Italy) it is either 5/4 (with one month of random roster per year) or random for extra money. A few different variations.

In Germany at the moment there are two bases, both in Berlin (Hamburg is closing): Shoenefeld and Tegel. Shoenefeld has around 10 planes, and Tegel has just been opened following Air Berlin going out of business. TXL will have 25 planes within the end of the year, so yes, two big bases. Stability is anybody's guess, the company traditionally does not have a problem to close bases that are not profitable enough or worse losing money.

I am in Italy right now.

Not many DEC are hired (less than 50 last year), from a purely statistical point of view it is easier to join as FO and then upgrade (with the required experience it can take as little as 1 year to start the command process).
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Old 22nd May 2018, 21:22
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I am a green card holder and have spent ten years on and off in the US, but I decided to move back to the Europe four years ago after having been away for a total of 13 years straight. I too hated having to cross the Atlantic to visit my family, especially once my siblings started to have kids and I missed the European way of life, in my view a simpler way of life.

I have a job allowing me to live anywhere in the world as I work a one month on/off schedule and I chose to live in southern Europe. After 2.5 years I decided to move to one of the few places in Europe with minimal tax (~9%) and with a great quality of life, something I personally never achieved in the US. I guess I just enjoy being around more like minded people and not living in what I feel nowadays, unfortunately, has become a police state, without the majority of its citizens realising it.

For someone who really feel they belong in the US, and very likely feel money is the most important thing in life, then the choice is easy. Stay in the US and reap the awesome benefits a major carrier over there currently (and most likely for a good while) will provide you with. I think few, if any pilot jobs in the world, matches those at the upper end of the spectrum in the US. At the moment I still have my GC, but I am moving closer and closer to the decision to give it up to get out of Uncle Sam’s long reaching tax grabbing hands.

I will most likely not make the kind of money currently on offer in the US, but, I make more than enough to live a comfortable life, and as long as I can stay on this level or higher I will retire quite comfortably too. Combine that with, to me as a European, a feeling of a more “resl” QOL back in Europe I personally couldn’t be happier. Sure, I would probably die in a bigger house sorrounded by more toys and more money in the bank had I stayed over there, but to me there’s more to life than “stuff”.

Before I get jumped on by defensive Americans who feel they live in the greatest country on earth, I perfectly understand and respect that they feel that way and that’s great, but we all see things through slightly different lenses which is what creates diversity on our planet. I feel like I have found my way home, despite not living in my country of birth, and I have no regrets.

It’s not an easy decision you face, and honestly, you very likely won’t fully know whether or not you made the right decision until you lie on your death bed, but that goes for many decisions in life. Best of luck no matter which path you choose.



Last edited by FlyTCI; 23rd May 2018 at 04:16.
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Old 22nd May 2018, 22:48
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And what about FedEx? They have a base in CGN.
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Old 23rd May 2018, 00:52
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Originally Posted by The Range View Post
And what about FedEx? They have a base in CGN.
Yeah that'd be awesome, and I'm for sure gonna apply once I have enough hours, but making it to Fedex is not easy at all.
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Old 23rd May 2018, 00:57
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Originally Posted by button push ignored View Post
My father will be 97 next month, and my mother is 91.
I commute to the UK once a month.
My brother felt the same way I did, and moved to Australia.
I think it very sad for them that their two children both upped and left.
But that’s what socialism brings - shared misery.
Once my parents are gone, I doubt I’ll visit the UK much, if ever.
I hardly recognize the place anymore.

The way I see it is.
Ryanair is Allegiant.
EasyJet is Spirit.
Jet2 is Frontier.
British Airways is currently Jet Blue but without the customer service.
Norwegian likes to think they are Southwest, but they aren’t even close.
Only the US wages are twice as much, for two thirds the work.

But the way I think things are heading is.
British Airways short haul will be Vueling.
British Airways long haul will be Norwegian.

I wouldn’t trade places with anybody on the planet, for that of a US legacy / major / cargo carrier.
I agree when you say you barely recognize the UK, in my case Spain. Instead of growing as a society and improving work conditions, we're going backwards.
Hey Allegiant got a new contract and pay is quite high haha. And Frontier, they better do it fast.
Anyways, I get your point, I do. I appreciate your point of view.
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Old 23rd May 2018, 01:01
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Originally Posted by dirk85 View Post
Rosters can depend from country to country. UK and most of the network is 5/4/5/3 (5 on/4 off/5 on/3 off), in other countries (Italy) it is either 5/4 (with one month of random roster per year) or random for extra money. A few different variations.

In Germany at the moment there are two bases, both in Berlin (Hamburg is closing): Shoenefeld and Tegel. Shoenefeld has around 10 planes, and Tegel has just been opened following Air Berlin going out of business. TXL will have 25 planes within the end of the year, so yes, two big bases. Stability is anybody's guess, the company traditionally does not have a problem to close bases that are not profitable enough or worse losing money.

I am in Italy right now.

Not many DEC are hired (less than 50 last year), from a purely statistical point of view it is easier to join as FO and then upgrade (with the required experience it can take as little as 1 year to start the command process).

Hmmm that's what I thought about DEC/FO. But right now this is my place, I jut got the ERJ job, and could probably get an upgrade in 1 year. Old experienced captains you can learn from, retired from 3 decades in p121.

5/4 is actually nice. But those 5/3....long term must be hard on the body, going up and down 6 times or so per day. Long duty days I'd imagine.
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Old 23rd May 2018, 01:04
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Originally Posted by FlyTCI View Post
I am a green card holder and have spent ten years on and off in the US, but I decided to move back to the Europe four years ago after having been away for a total of 13 years straight. I too hated having to cross the Atlantic to visit my family, especially once my siblings started to have kids and I kissed the European way of life, in my view a simpler way of life.

I have a job allowing me to live anywhere in the world as I work a one month on/off schedule and I chose to live in southern Europe. After 2.5 years I decided to move to one of the few places in Europe with minimal tax (~9%) and with a great quality of life, something I personally never achieved in the US. I guess I just enjoy being around more like minded people and not living in what I feel nowadays, unfortunately, has become a police state, without the majority of its citizens realising it.

For someone who really feel they belong in the US, and very likely feel money is the most important thing in life, then the choice is easy. Stay in the US and reap the awesome benefits a major carrier over there currently (and most likely for a good while) will provide you with. I think few, if any pilot jobs in the world, matches those at the upper end of the spectrum in the US. At the moment I still have my GC, but I am moving closer and closer to the decision to give it up to get out of Uncle Sam’s long reaching tax grabbing hands.

I will most likely not make the kind of money currently on offer in the US, but, I make more than enough to live a comfortable life, and as long as I can stay on this level or higher I will retire quite comfortably too. Combine that with, to me as a European, a feeling of a more “resl” QOL back in Europe I personally couldn’t be happier. Sure, I would probably die in a bigger house sorrounded by more toys and more money in the bank had I stayed over there, but to me there’s more to life than “stuff”.

It’s not an easy decision you face, and honestly, you very likely won’t fully know whether or not you made the right decision until you lie on your death bed, but that goes for many decisions in life. Best of luck no matter which path you choose.

Thanks for sharing!. I love being here to be honest, but I also love the old Europe atmosphere and way of doing things, so I guess I'm kinda flexible there.
Only reason why I care that much about money is because of my parents/sister. They got me here, they paid everything and did sacrifice a lot, so I have a moral debt with them. I couldn't afford to live like a king while they live in a tiny apartment because I sucked all the money to get where I got.
So yeah, not an easy decision man.
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